C64-Gamevideoarchive 285 - Silent Service
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FIVE AUTHENTIC BATTLE STATION SCREENS - FIVE PACIFIC SCENARIOS
Thrill to the initial sighting of the enemy's strike force in your periscope as
their ships come into your range. But watch out - the enemy's escorts have just
sighted you. You're the hunter - but suddenly - you've become the hunted!
As Commander, you must sink their ships and keep your submarine from being
destroyed - if you can. Will you select a quiet patrol sector in the Marianas
Islands or choose the dangerous waters off the coast of Japan? Is a submerged
daylight attack best or do you charge in on the surface at night using only
radar bearings to guide you? Do you fire a spread of your precious torpedoes or
can you close the range and pick off the enemy with a single torpedo shot?
These decisions and many more are yours to make as you take your place amiong
the elite ranks of the SILENT SERVICE!
A NOTE FROM THE DESIGNER
This simulation was inspired by the book "Clear the bridge" by Richard H O'Kane,
commander of the USS TANG during World War II. My hope was to capture in this
simulation some of the tense situations, quick decision making, and decisive
action so characteristic of World War II undersea combat. The design of this
product included extensive research, examination of actual WWII submarines, and
assistance of both current and former submariners. The software includes a
number of specially designed subsystems, including a dynamic map generation
module (loosely based on the mathematics of fractal curves), simultaneously
processing of data for five seperate graphic battle station screens, and a
detailed simulation of Japanese anti-submarine tactics. We hope that this
simulation will provide enjoyment for the new player, a sustained challenge for
the avid gamer, and perhaps a glimmer of recognition to all those who knew or
heard tales of those intrepid American undersea warriors of the Second World
War. Happy Hunting!
SILENT SERVICE is a detailed simulation of World War II submarine missions in
the Pacific. It places you into the role of submarine captain, presents you with
the same information, problems, and resources available to an actual sub
captain. Included are numerous scenarios, options and play variations. Five
detailed battle station screens, numerous commands, and realistic graphics and
sound effects combine to provide a dramatic level of realism and playability.
As is detailed later, US submarines played a crucial role in stemming the tide
of Japanese imperialism and winning the war in the Pacific. The primary mission
of the American Silent Service was to take on the Japanese Navy in their home
waters and to neutralise the Japanese Merchant Marine. As submarine commander in
this elite force, you will be evaluated based on the number and types of ship
which you sink.
The first group of scenarios recreate actual historical situations and require a
variety of different tactics. They are useful for becoming acquainted with the
mechanics of this simulation, practicing specific situations, or for quick
games. The real test of a submariner's skill however, are the Patrol scenarios.
Here you will encounter an almost infinite variety of situations as you seek out
and attack enemy convoys. With a limited number of torpedos and fuel, your goal
is to sink a maximum tonnage of enemy shipping and bring your sub successfully
back to base.
As an accurate simulation of a real-life situation, there are numerous details,
subleties, and features included in the simulation. The beginning player may
safely defer the consideration of some of these factors until a few games are
completed. The "Quick Start" section below is designed to allow experienced
players to boot the program and play without reading the extensive documentation
which follows. However, your enjoyment of this simulation will be enhanced by an
understanding of the tactics, missions, equipment, and history of submarine
combat as detailed in the remainder of this document.
SILENT SERVICE is sophisticated simulation which can be played at many
difficulty levels. However, like most people you are probably anxious to load up
this product and get started! We offer this "quick start" to get you going with
what we call the JG perspective. The JG perspective is that of a new Lieutenant
JG (Junior Grade), eager for battle, anxious to experience first-hand the
challenge of submarine combat. When you decide to investigate this simulation
in-depth, you will need to thoroughly review the contents of this operation
manual. But, for you JG's to grab your seabag, follow the short sea orders
below, and let's go!
1. Locate your loading instruction and load the program into your computer.
2. Review the battle station screens explanation to understand the options
available to you on each screen.
3. Review the joystick diagrams and keyboard commands so you can access the
options available on each screen.
4. Choose Torpedo/Gun Practice or a Convoy Action scenario. Stick to scenarios 1
or 2 until you learn to manouever and attack with your submarine.
5. Choose difficult level 1 (trainee).
6. Turn off all the reality level factors.
7. Good luck!
TARGET IDENTIFICATION PRACTICE
A vital skill which each sub captain must possess is the ability to recognise
and identify enemy targets. If you select one of the dangerous Patrol Mission
scenarios you will be given a chance to refresh your target identification
skills. Look up the ship requested (example: Japanese "Type 1" Destroyer) in
this operation Manual. Determine which of the four ship silhouettes displayed on
the screen matches the silhouette in the Operations Manual. Type the number of
the matching silhouette (1, 2, 3, 4). If you correctly identify the ship you may
proceed on your patrol. If you are incorrect, you will be re-assigned for
further training and will proceed to Torpedo/Gun Practice at Midway Island.
Upon loading, you will be allowed to select the scenario, options, and skill
factors you wish to use.
There are three types of scenarios "Torpedo/Gun Practice" places you outside the
American base at Midway Island. Four old cargo ships are anchored there as
torpedo and gunnery practice targets. The second set of scenarios: "Convoy
Actions" recreate various actual submarine attacks on a convoy. "War Patrols"
allow you to command an entire patrol, beginning at the submarine bases at
Midway, Brisbane, or Fremantle: continuing through a number of convoy actions,
and concluding with a return to base.
You may select from one of four skill levels: "MIDSHIPMAN", "LIEUTENANT",
"COMMANDER", or "CAPTAIN". The skill level affects the accuracy of torpedo runs,
damage sustained from depth charge attack, the skill of enemy lookouts and sonar
operators, as well as other factors. The "MIDSHIPMAN" level is designed to
provide a challenge for beginning players. The "COMMANDER" level is designed to
be historically accurate. The "CAPTAIN" level is intended for the expert sub
driver. Press 1, 2, 3, or 4 to change the skill level.
In addition, you may customize the simulation with various "reality levels".
Each level introduces an element which makes the simulation both more realistic
and more difficult. To select the reality level use the joystick to move the
flashing asterisk and press the trigger to toggle the YES/NO indicator.
1) Limited Visibility
If this level is selected enemy ships which are beyond radar/sonar range will
not appear on the map display. Enemy ships which were detected but have moved
out of range will blink slowly at their last known position. If this level is
not selected, all enemy ships appear on the map displays regardless of their
range or location.
2) Convoy Zig-Zags
If this level is selected the enemy convoys will "zig-zag" (change course) at
regular intervals. If this level is not selected, cargo ships will steam
straight ahead unless they are attacked by torpedos or encounter land masses.
3) Dud Torpedos
If this level is selected some of your torpedos may be duds, especially during
the years 1942 - 1943. Dud torpedos may hit the enemy but will not explode, only
the splash will be seen.
4) Port Repairs Only
If this level is selected repairs will no longer be accomplished automatically
while in battle or on patrol. Once an item of major equipment is damaged, it may
not be repaired.
5) Expert Destroyers
If this level is slected certain enemy convoys will be escorted by "expert"
destroyers. These escorts are more persistent and have better trained sonar
6) Convoy Search
If this level is selected convoys will not always appear within radar range. You
will need to search them out. Far off convoys are best sighted by performing a
360 degree periscope/binocular sweep of the horizon.
7) Angle-On-Bow Input
If this level is selected the computer will no longer calculate the "Angle on
the Bow" for torpedo shots. You must enter the angle yourself based on periscope
observations. Be sure you understand the workings of the Torpedo Data Computer
before attempting this level. Recommended for experienced players only.
The skill levels and reality levels you select combine to produce an overall
difficulty factor from 1 to 9. This difficulty factor and the tonnage which you
sink will determine your ranking in the "Submariner's Hall of Fame" at the
conclusion of your mission.
Once you are satisfied with the skill and reality level, press "F7" to load the
remainder of the game and begin play.
Additional data may be loaded at this time. When loading is completed you will
appear in the conning tower (or the Patrol Navigation Map if you selected a War
Patrol scenario) and the action will begin!
BATTLE STATION SCREENS
SILENT SERVICE contains multiple Battle Station screens. On each screen
different information is available and different commands can be entered. The
battle stations represents the key locations which are used by the captain to
manage the battle as his sub goes into action.
Battle Station: Conning Tower
The conning tower is the captain's primary station in battle. The conning tower
contains the attack periscope, the map plot, critical gauges and instruments,
and submarine controls. As the battle proceeds, the captain commands the sub
from his nerve centre. The conning tower screen acts as menu screen - from this
screen, you may select any of the five detailed battle station screens which are
described below. Use the joystick to position the captain at the desired
battle station and press the trigger. Centre - Periscope, Up - Bridge,
Left - Instruments and Gauges, Right - Maps and Charts, Down - Damage Reports.
To access the Binoculars battle station you must first go to the Bridge, then
press the fire button again. You may return to the conning tower from these
screens by pressing the fire button.
You may also select two special functions from this screen. If you selected a
War Patrol scenario, the "Continue Patrol" function (joystick down and left)
ends the current convoy battle and returns you to the patrolling screen. You
will not be allowed to break off the engagement if you are being tracked by
enemy escorts, have torpedos active, or immediately after sinking an enemy ship.
If you selected a Convoy Action scenario, the "End of Game" function (joystick
down and left) will end your mission.
The "Quartermaster's Log" option (joystick down and right) is used to review
your accomplishments so far in this patrol.
If you prefer, keystroke commands may be used to make these slections. (See the
section on Keyboard Controls.) All other keyboard commands are ignored until you
select a battle station.
When you are at the conning tower screen, the simulation is paused. Note that
some selections are not available under certain conditions: i.e. the Bridge if
you are under water, etc.
Battle Station: Patrol Navigation Map
(War Patrol scenarios only)
The patrol screen simulates the time required to to proceed to and from your
base to enemy controlled waters as well as the patrolling activity between
engagements. (A typical patrol lasted up to two months.) This screen displays a
map of the Western Pacific Ocean. You are free to explore any area of the map.
Use the joystick to move your submarine (black dot) to the areas which you wish
to patrol. The screen border will change from light blue in the daytime to dark
blue at night.
When a convoy is sighted, the screen border will turn red. You may engage the
convoy by pressing the fire button, or you may continue patrolling. Note that
enemy ships are generally found along the heavily travelled convoy routes (see
centre insert map) and close to land. Valuable tanker and troop ship convoys are
more likely to be found near Japan.
The submarine bases at Midway Island, Fremantle, and Brisbane are indicated by
flashing dots. When you have reached your base and the screen border turns
green, you may end the patrol by pressing the fire button. If you get the urge
to explore a particular area of the map, you may do so, even if no convoys have
been sighted and you are not at your base. Simply press the fire button.
Battle Station: Maps and Charts
The maps and charts screen displays information available from the navigator and
the tracking party. Map information, visual sightings, radar and sonar are
combined on this screen to show the location of your submarine, torpedoes, and
all known enemy ships. Your submarine is represented by a black dot, torpedoes
and enemy ships are white dots, green areas represent land masses and islands.
You may enlarge or shrink the map to any of four levels of detail (using the Z
and X keys). The initial map shows the entire Western Pacific. The Patrol Area
map shows a 500 by 300 mile area. Zoom again you will see the Navigation map
which shows 60 by 40 miles. The most detailed map; the Attack Plot Map, shows an
area of 8 miles by 5 miles. On the Attack Plot, ships are displayed with small
"tails" which indicate the direction each ship is moving. If an enemy ship is no
longer within sighting range, a dot will flash slowly as its last known
If more ships, torpedoes, etc. are active than the tracking party can handle,
the most distant objects may be dropped from the map. As on most screens, the
bottom of the screen displays messages from the crew and the sub's speed, depth,
Battle Station: Bridge
The bridge screen provides a wide-angle view of nearby ships, islands, and
coastline. This screen also displays the current visibility conditions (good,
average, or poor). You may only select this screen if your sub is on the
surface. To look to the left or right, press the joystick in that direction.
Notice that the "Bearing" changes as you rotate. Bearing is the direction in
which you are looking expressed in compass degrees. Bearing 000 indicates that
you are looking North, 090 is East, 180 is South and 270 is West. Holding down
the joystick fire button will increase the speed of rotation. Note that the
joystick does NOT change the heading of your submarine, only the direction in
which you are LOOKING. Use the keyboard commands to control the sub while on the
Battle Station: Periscope/Binoculars
This screen displays the view through the attack periscope during
daylight/dusk/dawn and the view from the bridge Target Bearing Transmitter
binoculars at night (the attack periscope did not transmit enough light to be
used at night). This screen shows an enlarged image of visible ships and land.
The periscope may be rotated using the joystick (hold down the fire button for
fast rotation). When the crosshairs turn white, the Torpedo Data Computer is
activated and target tracking is displayed.
You may fire a torpedo by pressing "T", fire the deck gun by pressing "G", or
request target information from the Identification party by pressing the "I"
The Torpedo Data Computer displays the range to the target, the target's speed
and "angle on the bow", the computer spyro lead angle necessary to hit the ship,
and the target's course. This last piece of information is not available if you
have selected the "Enter Angle-On-Bow" reality level.
This screen may be selected when the sub is on the surface or at periscope depth
in daylight (44 feet or less).
INSTRUMENTS AND GAUGES
This screen displays vital status information. The straight up position for all
gauges represents a zero value, with increasing values in the clockwise
direction. The primary instruments and gauges are:
(A) BATTERY LEVEL - a gauge indicating the amount of electricity remaining in
the battery. The battery is used for submerged cruising and is gradually
recharged when on the surface. If your battery is exhausted you will be unable
to move while underwater. A fully charged battery will allow one hour of high
speed manoeuvering underwater, five or six hours at slow speeds.
(B) BATTERY CHARGE LIGHT - indicates the battery is being charged.
(C) BATTERY IN USE LIGHT - indicates the battery is being used.
(D) TORPEDO READY INDICATOR - a series of lights indicating which forward and
aft torpedoes tubes are ready for firing. Green indicates ready, black indicates
empty. Torpedo reloading is performed automatically and requires about 10 game
minutes per tube. The green number under each column of torpedoes indicates how
many bow/aft torpedoes remain in addition to those already in the tubes. The red
number above the indicator indicates how many deck gun shells remain.
(H) FUEL LEVELS - three vertical tubes showing the diesel fuel levels in the
three main tanks. The diesel fuel floats on the top of the water. The tubes show
the amount of fuel (black) and water (white) in each tank. Full tanks allowed
for 50 or 60 days cruising.
(I) DEPTH UNDER THE KEEL - a gauge showing the depth from your sub to the ocean
bottom. When this gauge reads zero you will run aground. Maximum reading on this
gauge is 500 feet.
(J) WATER TEMPERATURE - a gauge showing the temperature of the water outside the
submarine. A blue dial hand indicates that the submarine is below a thermal
(K) "CHRISTMAS TREE" - light indicating the status of all hull openings. Green
light indicates closed, red light indicates open. Hull openings are closed
automatically when you give the order to dive.
(L) COMPASS - indicates the direction the submarine is heading.
(M) THROTTLE 0-4 throttle settings. All stop 1/2, 2/3, full and flank speeds.
(N) CLOCK - shows the time of day. The sweep hand shows MINUTES and the number
printed below is the HOUR (0-23) in 24 hour time. Dusk in the Pacific is from
7:00 PM (Hour 19) to 8:00 PM (Hour 20) dawn is from 5:00 AM to 6:00 AM.
(O) DIVE BUBBLE - a horizontal tube showing whether the submarine is diving or
DAMAGE REPORTS SCREEN
This screen indicates the nature of any damage to the submarine. Damage may be
caused by depth charge attacks or enemy gunfire. Types of damage include:
Bow/Aft torpedo damage: these torpedo tube doors have been damaged. The
torpedoes will not fire.
Periscope damage: the periscope housing has been damaged. The periscope cannot
be lowered or raised.
Dive Plane damage: the bow and stern dive planes have been damaged. The
submarine will only dive or surface at half its normal size.
Fuel Leaking: the external fuel tanks are leaking. Fuel will be consumed at
twice the normal rate. In addition, fuel rising to the surface will make the
submarine easier to detect by enemy destroyers.
Engine Damage: the main diesel engines are damaged. Surface speeds are reduced
Machinery Damage: internal pumps and engines are damaged. The extra noise makes
the enemy's sonar tracking easier.
Battery Damage: batteries are used up at twice the normal rate when submerged.
If the "Port Repair Only" reality level is not selected repairs are attempted by
the crew automatically.
If your sub is taking on water, the leakage rate is indicated in gallons per
second (GPS). Leakage will often cause your sub to descend, although the dive
planes may be able to counter-act the dive. This information is provided in the
top right hand side of the Damage Reports Screen.
SUB CONTROL DIAGRAM AND STATUS AREA
The bottom two lines of most screens contain the sub control diagram and the
status area. The sub control diagram on the left is a rear view of your sub
with the current rudder, dive plane and throttle settings displayed.
Left and right arrows indicate left/right rudder, up and down arrows
indicate up/down dive planes, and a number 0-4 shows the throttle setting.
The bottom line displays your current speed (in knots), depth (in feet) and
heading (in degrees). The top line is used to keep you informed of status
messages from the crew.
USING THE JOYSTICK
Many commands such as battle station selection or controlling the sub may be
accomplished either via the joystick or through keyboard commands.
Holding the joystick right or left will rotate the periscope or bridge views and
is used to aim your torpedoes and gun. You may accelerate this rotation by
pressing the fire button.
On remaining screens you may control your sub using the joystick; hold the stick
left or right to control the rudder, up or down to affect the dive planes.
Pressing the fire button by itself returns you to the conning tower screen.
[ Pictures omitted ]
Battle station controls for:
Maps, instruments, damage control
Joystick Up: Surface
Joystick Down: Dive
Joystick Left: Left rudder
Joystick Right: Right rudder
Joystick Fire: Return to conning tower
Battle station controls for:
Bridge and periscope battlestations
Joystick Left: View left
Joystick Left+Fire: View left with increased rotation rate
Joystick Right: View right
Joystick Right+Fire: View right with increased rotation rate
Joystick Fire: Return to conning tower
Map F1 Select the maps and charts battle stations screen
If you are already at the maps and charts, pressing
this key will re-center the map on your sub
Bridge F3 Select the bridge battle station screen. This is
only possible when the sub is on the surface.
Scope F5 Select the periscope/binocular battle station
screen. This display is only available if the sub
is at periscope depth or on the surface.
Gauges F7 Select the Gauges and instrument station screen.
Damage F2 Select the Damage reports battle station screen.
Log F4 Display the Quartermaster's log for the
Patrol/End F8 Return to the patrol selection display to search
for another convoy. This ends the game if you are
playing a "Convoy Action" scenario.
Zoom Z Expand the situation map display. Used to take a
closer look at nearby ships and terrain.
Unzoom X Compress the situation map display. Used to get a
wider view of ship locations and land areas.
Throttle 0-4 Throttle settins. All stop, 1/3, 2/3, Full and
Dive D Causes your sub to dive to a deeper depth. When you
have reached the desired depth, cancel this command
by pressing Return.
Surface S Causes your sub to come up to a lesser depth,
cancel this command by pressing Return.
Reverse R Reverse the engines. Note that the turning effect
of the rudder is reversed if the sub is proceeding
Emergency CTRL E Blow emergency tanks. This will often halt an
otherwise fatal dive. However, it will generally
bring the sub to the surface. You may only perform
this once per engagement.
Periscope P Raise/Lower periscope. This command also sets the
visual bearing to be the same as your sub's heading
- you will be looking straight ahead.
ID I Identify target on scope.
Torpedo T Fire torpedo. Bow or aft tubes will be selected
automatically depending on which faces the target
more directly. Note that four torpedos or gun
shells may be active at any one time. If a fifth
torpedo is fired before the first completes its
run, the first torpedo will end its run prematurely
and the new torpedo will be launched.
Gun G Fire the 4-inch deck gun.
Up 25 + Add 25 yards to the deck gun range deflection.
Down 25 - Subtract 25 yards from the deck gun range deflection.
Faster F Increase the time scale to cause the simulation to
proceed more rapidly.
Normal N Return to normal time scale.
Left Crsr left Left rudder, press again for full left rudder.
To cancel press Return.
Right Crsr right Right rudder, press again for full right rudder.
To cancel press Return.
Cancel Return Cancel turn and dive commands.
Wait W Pause the simulation - press any key to continue.
You may also pause by going to the Conning Tower
Conning tower Space Return to the conning tower screen.
Release Debris ? In a desperate situation, a sub might release
debris and oil which would rise to the surface. The
objective was to convince the escorts that the sub
had been sunk. You may only use this ploy once per
AOB A Enter Angle-on-Bow estimate. Angle-on-Bow is
entered in degrees by holding the joystick left or
right. Press the fire button to enter the estimate.
Use positive numbers for port, negative numbers for
starboard. ie. 45 degrees starboard is -045.
END OF MISSION, SCORING AND RANKS
Convoy Action missions end when you select the "End of Game" option.
War patrol missions end when you return to one of your bases. Either mission
type ends if you are sunk or beached. In all cases you will see a screen
displaying all ships which you have sunk and your final rank.
Many patrols failed to sink any enemy ships, while successful captains often
sank over 15,000 tons. Your mission is to sink the highest tonnage of shipping
without losing your sub. The simulation records your sinkings automatically.
Your ranking will be based on tonnage sunk, difficulty level, and reality levels
chosen. The higher the leves, the more value your tonnage is given, All players
will rank at least Ensing. Higher levels are Lieutenant JG,
Lieutenant Commander, Commander, Captain, Vice-Admiral, Admiral, Fleet Admiral
and ultimately WGSC (World's Greatest Submarine Captain)!
Press "F7" from this screen to embark on a new mission.
SUBMARINER'S HALL OF FAME
If you have successful cruise, you will be prompted to enter your name.
This makes you eligible for the Submariner's Hall of Fame!
The hall of fame records the best rankings achieved and also includes the real-
life tonnages sunk by five submarines in actual war patrols.
Remember that your rank is computed based on both tonnage sunk and the
difficulty factors used.
MESSAGES AND SOUNDS
You may receive messages at any time from various members of the crew.
Rudder, throttle, and periscope commands will be acknowledged. You will also
hear the sounds of your own engines, nearby ships, and torpedoes. In addtition
there are messages and sounds with special meanings:
SONAR REPORTS DESTROYERS CLOSING (ping sound)
The sonarman is reporting that the submarine has been located by the
SONAR REPORTS DEPTH CHARGES DROPPED (splash sound)
The soundman is reporing that a destroyer overhead has dropped depth
charges into the water.
DEPTH CHARGES EXPLODING! (Explosion sounds)
LOOKOUT REPORT DESTROYERS FIRING (gun sound)
Lookouts on the bridge are reporting that enemy destroyers are in range
and are firing at the sub.
SHELL HIT! SUB DAMAGED (Whistling explosion sound)
Your submarine has been hit by a destroyer's shell. Damage has been sustained.
BOW (AFT) TORPEDO FIRED! 135' TRACK (Torpedo launch, torpedo motor sound)
One of your torpedos has been launched in the direction indicated.
DECK GUN FIRED (gun fire sound)
You have fired your deck gun in the direction indicated.
SONAR REPORTS DISTANT EXPLOSIONS (Distant explision sound)
The sonarman is reporting a torpedo or gun hit.
WARNING: TEST DEPTH EXCEEDED (hull creaking sound)
You have exceeded the subs rated test depth, small leaks are starting.
(Check the Damage Reports screen.)
WE HAVE RUN AGROUND! (grinding sound)
Your sub is scraping the bottom. You will be stopped until you rise off the
Work parties report that they have repaired a damaged component; check the
damage reports screen.
BLOW EMERGENCY TANK! (alarm sound)
The emergency buotancy tank has been emptied.
RAMMED BY ENEMY SHIP (grinding sound)
You have been rammed by an enemy ship and will start to sink.
This is usally fatal.
In order to ensure accuracy, all ship movement, sightings, torpedo runs, and
dive raters are recalculated every two seconds of simulated game time. However,
under most conditions it is desirable to speed up the action somewhat.
Normally the simulation proceeds at four times real-time: One minute of game
time takes 15 seconds. If the "F" is selected on the clock, the time scale is
doubled. Repeated pressing will continue to increase the Time Scale up to a
maximum of 32 times real times (ie. one hour of game time will take 2 minutes
at time scale 4). When the "N" command is entered, you are detected by the enemy
or torpedoes are fired, the time scaling returns to normal.
SUB DETECTION TABLE (10 knots)
| | DAY | NIGHT |
|SURFACED | | |
| Full profile |20000 | 3000 | (Distance in yards)
| Minimum profile | 8000 | 1000 |
|PERISCOPE DEPTH | | |
| Full profile | 6000 | 2000 |
| Minimum profile | 2000 | 800 |
|SUBMERGED (*) | | |
| Full profile | 2000 | 2000 |
| Minimum profile | 800 | 800 |
* If the submarine was under a temperature gradient layer, the sigthing range
was substantially less.
The US fleet submarine of the Second World War was an outstanding weapon. With
200 tons of diesel fuel and a cruising range of 12,000 miles, no area of the
pacific was safe for enemy shipping Four diesel engines produced 6,4000 horse-
power for a maximum surface speed of 20 knots. Battery driven electric motors
provided submerged propulsion at up to 10 knots for short periods. The rated
test depth of the first submarines was 300 feet, while later craft were rated
for more than 400 feet. Both were capable of somewhat greater depths under
The WWII fleet submarine incorporated a variety of navigation, detection, and
fire control devices. The periscope could be used for visual observation to a
depth of 44 feet. The scope provided target range and bearing information to
the torpedo Data Computer.
Surface Radar could be used on the surface or at periscope depth. SJ surface
radar had a range of up to 16,000 yards.
Passive (listening) sonar became the primary source of information when
submerged. Experienced sonar operators could determine ship speed, bearing, and
estimated range up to a distance of 6,000 yards.
[ Submarine picture omitted ]
At various times during the war, significant new equipment and tactics were
November 1942: Us submarines were equipped with surface radar. This allowed
enemy ships to be detected at ranges of up to 16,000 yards. Prior to this time,
visual sightings and sonar were the only means of detecting enemy ships.
April 1943: The Japanese increase the escort strength for their vital tanker and
troop ship convoys. All such convoys now contain at least one escort.
August 1943: A new stronger pressure hull US submarines increases the maximum
safe depth from 300 to almost 425 feet. This change was unknown to the Japanese
who tended to set their depth chages to shallow.
September 1943: An improved detonator is fitted onto American torpedoes, greatly
reducing the incidence of "dud" torpedoes.
January 1944: Mark 20 Electric torpedoes are introduced. These "wakeless"
torpedoes no longer pinpoint the location of a submarine firing torpedoes. But
their relatively slow 30 knots speed requires a good close-in attack position.
July 1944: The Japanese introduce radar on their escort vessels, making surface
attacks much more difficult.
A successful submarine attack was very much a team effort by the entire
submarine crew, with the captain directing. The torpedomen and machinists mates
maintained the torpedoes and engines. The soundman listened to the enemy ship
through sensitive underwater hydrophones. By counting propeller revolutions and
rotating the hydrophone, the soundman could estimate the enemy's speed and
bearing. A radar party tracked the enemy on SJ surface radar, in the conning
tower, the tracking party plotted the submarine's position and the position of
enemy targets and escorts on the attack plot map. The identification party stood
ready to identify enemy ship types as the captain called out his periscope
observations. On the bridge, lookouts scanned the seas for enemy ships.
As the submarine approached the enemy, tracking party fed the enemy's speed,
course, range and bearing into the Torpedo Data Computer to calculate the
correct gyro angles for torpedo firing.
At the focus of this activity, the captain made the crucial decisions which
spelled the difference between success or failure. Carefully weighing the number
of escorts, the types of ships, visibility, water depth, number of torpedoes
remaining, battery charge, the convoy's course and speed he decided how, when
and where to attack the enemy. Within their low surface profile and ability to
submerge, stealth and surprise were a vital ingredient in all submarine attacks.
Once a enemy ship or convoy had been spotted a successful attack required a well
thought out approach to within a few thousand yards of the enemy without being
detected: quick and decisive torpedo aiming and firing: and the clever use of
speed, depth and water temperature to evade the inevitable counterattack.
The first priority upon sighting an enemy convoy was to determine its course and
composition. At this point the decision to attack would be made. Next, the
captain would direct his sub to a position ahead or on the beam of the convoy
while reamaining undetected. During daylight, the captain waited submerged,
letting the convoy come into firing range. At night a surface attack was called
for although visibility varied greatly with haze and moonlight. During the
dawn/dusk hour the periscope was usable but the submarine remained difficult to
see, making this an ideal time for attack.
The key to the approach phase was to achieve a favourable firing position
without being detected by the enemy's escorts. As a result of the submarine's
slow underwater speed, much of the manoeuvering during the approach has to be
conducted on the surface, which made the sub vulnerable to detection. US radar
could detect ships at range of 16,000 yards (8 miles) or more. This generally
gave the submarine the initiative as Japanese lookouts might see a sub at 10,000
yards during the day or 3,000 yards at night. When submerged, passive
(listening) sonar could track Japanese ships at up to 6,000 yards, although this
range lessened quickly if the sub was moving or at depth. Japanese sonar could
detect a rapidly moving submerged submarine at up to 5,000 yards, although at
maximum depth and rigged for silent running, they were very difficult to find.
Both during approach and escape the captain would attempt to provide a minimum
profile to the enemy by pointing the sub directly towards (or away from) the
enemy. Even when submerged, a minimum profile provided the smallest sonar target
to the enemy destroyers.
Primary submarine armament consisted of six torpedo tubes forward and four
tubes aft. A total of 24 torpedoes were carried: 14 forward and 10 aft.
A torpedo reload required about 10 minutes.
The Mark 14 steam torpedo had a range of 4,500 yards at 46 knots. In order to
protect the submarine from premature detonation, the warhead was not armed until
the torpedo had travelled 450 yards. The Mark 14 was propelled by steam
generated by a spray of water passing through a torch of burning alcohol.
This left a trail of bubbles on the surface which pointed back towards the
firing submarine. Torpedo steering was controlled by an internal gyroscope.
These complex devices suffered from a number of severe problems. Chief among
them being the tendency to run too deep, thereby passing underneath the target,
and the tendency of the Mark 6 exploder not to explode on contact with the
target. Both of these problems were eventually corrected as the war progressed.
In late 1944 the Mark 18 electric torpedo was introduced. This weapon ran slower
than the steam torpedo, 30 knots. However, it did not produce the tell-tale
bubble stream of its predecessor. Sub commanders were no longer forced to escape
after the first torpedo salvo. Under ideal conditions, ship after ship could be
sunk as the escorts circled frantically searching for the unseen attacker.
Most torpedoes were therefore fired at a range of 1,000-3,000 yards. The best
torpedo track was one which was perpendicular to the course of the target ship.
This provided the largest potential target area. Head-on shots or stern shots
were unlikely to hit their target.
TORPEDO FIRING TERMINOLOGY
GYRO ANGLE - The angle between the fore and aft axis of own ship and final track
of torpedo, measured clockwise from own ship bow.
OWN COURSE - The angle between the north-south line and the fore and aft axis of
own ship, measured clockwise from north to target bow.
TARGET COURSE - The angle between the north-south line and the fore and aft axis
of target, measured clockwise from north to target bow.
ANGLE ON THE BOW - The angle between the fore and aft axis of target and the
line of sight (LOS), measured from target bow to starboard or port.
TRUE TARGET BEARING - The angle between the north-south line and the line of
sight, measured clockwise from the north.
LEAD ANGLE - The angle between the true target bearing and the torpedo track.
RANGE - The distance in yards from periscope to target.
TORPEDO RUN - The distance in yards which the torpedo travels from tube to
TORPEDO DATA COMPUTER
Contrary to popular belief, the captain did not estimate an amount by which to
"lead" the target. US submarines used a Torpedo Data Computer (TDC), an early-
model analog device. The TDC, when fed with the target speed, range and course,
automatically calculated the correct torpedo track. The TDC calculated and fed
the gyro angle directly to the gyroscope which steered the torpedoes.
The gyro angle calculated by the TDC was based on the target's maintaining a
constant course and speed. The captain would often aim slightly ahead or behind
the target ship if he expected a particular change in course. Frequently a
"spread" of torpedoes was fired by aiming one torpedo slightly of the target,
one torpedo directly at the target, and one torpedo slightly behind the target.
In this simulation the gyro lead angle is automatically added to your periscope
bearing when the torpedoes are fired. Example: you have an enemy ship centered
squarely in your crosshairs, bearing 090 degrees (due east). The target is on a
course of 180 (south). The TDC calculates a gyro angle of 10 degrees.
If you fire a torpedo it will assume a 100 degree track: (your 090 degree
periscope bearing plus 10 degrees gyro angle) and should hit the target. In the
same situation, if your periscope is pointed at 085 (slightly behind the target)
your torpedo will assume an 095 track (85+10). This torpedo should pass behind
the target but may hit if the target zigs or zags.
It was important to make the first set of torpedoes count. Once the torpedo
tracks were spotted, the convoy would begin to zig-zag radically and the escorts
would charge in on the sub's position.
The captain's role during the firing procedure was to call off range, bearing,
and angle on the bow information which were input into the TDC and to select
the moment to fire the torpedo(es).
Most US subs were equipped with a 4-inch deck gun. This gun had a range of up to
8,000 yards and a fairly rapid rate of fire. Although infrequently used, the
deck gun was effective in sinking badly damaged targets or to slow a ship down
and force it to fall behind the convoy. The gun was also used as a fast ditch
measure by subs which had been forced to surface or had suffered too much damage
to dive safely.
The gun may only be fired when your sub is on the surface. Use the crosshairs on
the periscope/binocular screen to aim the gun. The range is automatically set to
the TDC range of the target at which you are aiming. Use "+" and "-" keys to add
or subtract deflection from this range. Example: an 18 knot destroyer coming
directly towards you from 4,000 yards away will move over 200 yards in the time
it takes to shell the target. Therefore you should use the "-" key to select a
deflection of -200 to -250 yards before firing the gun. At 2,000 yards the shell
will only take half the time to reach the target, so a -100 yard deflection
should be used. More than one shell may be in flight at any one time. You will
see a splash of water the shell lands. If the shell hits its target, you
will see and hear the explosions. Your gun is supplied with 80 shells.
If detected by enemy escorts, escape became the sub's main objective.
A submarine was no match for even a single destroyer in a gun and ramming duel.
The usual tactic was to dive as deeply as possible and rig for silent running.
The enemy escort would circle over the last known position of the submarine,
hoping to pick up a sonar echo from the submarines hull. Maintaining a minimum
profile and maximum running noise was especially important under these
circumstances. A strong temperature gradient could also provide some protection
from the enemy's sonar. Leaking fuel or machinery damage made the escort's job
easier. Submarines gained some benefit from their tighter turning circle and
ability to constantly track the escorts propeller noises. Under extreme
circumstances, a sub might try to convince the attacking destroyers it had been
destroyed by releasing oil and debirs which floated to the surface.
At night the sub's 20 knot surface speed was sometimes sufficient to outrun
TACTICAL SITUATION PLOTS
The diagrams below will provide some sense of the combat situations faced by
submarine captains. These are by no means all of the potential situations which
you will encounter. They are presented here as examples of real-life submarine
tactics and to assist you in surviving the myriad dangers of undersea combat.
Situation 1: End Around Attack
You are at periscope depth and have just sighted a 10-knot convoy bearing 090
degrees (due East). You determine the enemy's base course to be 045 (Northeast).
It is around noon: seven hours of daylight remain. The convoy is escorted by at
least one destroyer. Your torpedo tubes are full and your battery is fully
charged. What is your plan?
This is a difficult situation: the convoy is steaming too fast for a submerged
approach. A cautious skipper might leave this convoy alone and look for easier
game. A foolhardy captain might charge in for a stern surface attack, but a
surfaced marine is no match for a destroyer during daylight.
The experienced skipper would probably try the "end-around" tactic. Turn and
proceed submerged away from the convoy until you are out of visual sighting
range - about 10,000 yards depending on the visibility. Now surface and use
maximum speed to achieve position ahead of the convoy, taking care to stay out
of visual sighting range. Track the convoy on radar as you proceed. In an escort
leaves the convoy and heads in your direction, you have probably been sighted -
dive immediately. It may take some time to carry out this manoeuvre, use the
time scaling feature to speed up the simulation. Once you are in front of the
convoy, go to periscope depth and wait for the convoy to come to you. Make your
torpedoes count! (Note that this situation is similar to the USS SEARAVEN
Situation 2: Night/Surface Intercept
You are patrolling on the surface when radar picks up a convoy bearing 045
(Northeast). It is a dark and hazy night. Radar determines the enemy's base
course to be 180 (South) at 8 knots. Two "kaibokan" escorts appear to be leading
the convoy. What do you do?
This is an excellent set up. You are ahead of the convoy and visibility is poor.
Your primary consideration should be to avoid detection by the escorts as you
approach the convoy. Use moderate speed and keep your bow pointed towards the
escorts as much as possible. This provides only a small visual target for the
enemy lookouts to detect.
You should be able to reach an ideal firing position off the convoy's beam at a
range of 1,000-2,000 yards. If you time your approach when the escorts are busy
on the other side of the convoy, you may be able to escape on the surface: the
"kaibokan" can only turn 18 knots. Good Luck! (Note that this situation is
similar to the USS HAMMERHEAD scenario).
Situation 3: Daylight/Submerged Attack
During a routine day periscope sweep you observe a convoy heading directly
towards you: range 4,000 yards! An escort is in the lead and four cargo ships
follow in a diamond pattern. Act quickly!
You should immediately head perpendicular to the convoy's track to pull yourself
into a favourable firing position for a broadside torpedo shot. Since you will
be turning your broadside to the enemy you should dive to reduce the chance of
sonar contact. Once in firing position, wait until the two middle ships give you
an "overlapping" target.
Torpedos which miss the closer ship then have a good chance of hitting the
Situation 4: Avoiding Enemy Escorts
You have just loosed three steam torpedoes at a particularly juicy tanker. The
two escorting destroyers have not detected your presence. You are at periscope
depth during daylight.
It is extremely tempting to watch your torpedoes as they head towards the
target. You will only do this once! As soon as your torpedoes reach their
target, the bubble trails will point directly to your firing position. At 26
knots, the destroyers will be there quickly. You must get away immediately. Head
away from the destroyers at maximum speed, dive as deeply as possible. If the
destroyers get close, minimize your speed to reduce noise. Two escorts can be
very dangerous, as it is usually impossible to present a minimum sonar profile
to both ships.
Situation 5: Shallow Water Escape
You are in trouble! Behind you three cargo ships are burning from a well-planned
torpedo salvo. But an angry escort is charging towards you. The constant pinging
leaves no doubt that you have been detected. To make matters worse, you are
close inshore in less than 100 feet of water! What now?
You are probably in for a long afternoon. At this depth, a depth charge attack
might well be fatal. Your best bet is to use your sub's tight turning circle to
prevent the escort from getting directly overhead.
Follow him on the attack plot map; try to anticipate his manoeuvres. Use maximum
forward and reverse speeds to dodge him. Whenever you get a chance, head out
towards deeper water - it is your only chance for escape.
SUBMARINE WARFARE IN THE SOUTH PACIFIC
The American fleet was a complex and formidable war machine ideally suited for
the vast reaches of the Pacific and the far-flung Japanese convoy routes.
American submariners developed an aggressive doctrine which frequently took them
into the heavily travelled waters off the coast of Japan.
Sub skippers vied to surpass each other in ships and tonnages sunk. As the war
progressed, US sub strength grew from a handful of antiquated craft to a
powerful striking force of over two hundred vessels. The ranks of the commanders
were also transformed as the pressures of undersea warfare weeded out the
peacetime sailors and forged an elite cadre of young, aggressive, and skillful
The history of submarine warfare in the Pacific is the story of these men and
the highly trained crews they led. Each patrol, each attack was a personal
confrontation between these men and a skillful and determined enemy. The Allied
victory in the Pacific was in no small measure a consequence of their
[Picture omitted - picture shows how a torpedo was built up]
1. War Head.
2. Air Flask (fuel water).
3. Midship Section (combustion flask igniter).
4. Afterbody (oil tank, turbines, depth engine, gyro steering engine, immersion
mechanism, starting level, depth index).
5. Tail (exhaust manifold).
U.S. SUBMARINES IN THE SOUTH PACIFIC
EMERGENCE OF THE U.S. SUBMARINE: Operational submarines date back to the time of
the American Revolution, but it was not until Second World War that the "Silent
Service" came into its own as an essential part of the American armed forces.
Early efforts at submarine combat were beset with many problems. Submarines were
deployed World War 1, but saw little action. The years that followed brought
limited budgets, limited interests and U.S. sub development became a low
priority item. The Japanese military, in contrast, had been constantly at war
since the beginning of the 1930's. They enjoyed superior weapons and numbers,
and their troops were battle tested and combat ready. The Japanese sank a number
of U.S. carriers and came close enough to the American West Coast to shell
several targets there, including Los Angeles.
Japanese leaders were not infallible. Those leaders with first-hand knowledge of
the vast industrial potential and internal resources of the U.S. were ignored by
the majority of the Japanese military elite - a fatal lapse for a small island
nation, heavily dependent on a vital shipping force. The Japanese also
underestimated the strength and range of the 1930's vintage American subs, which
were nearly a match for the Japanese I-boats at the beginning of the war.
Compounding this shortsightedness was a deeply ingrained sense of racial
superiority on the part of the Japanese. This arrogance would prove costly as
the war progressed.
The early days of WWII undoubtedly reinforced the Japanese sense of superiority.
The inexperienced American sub fleet got off to a lacklustre start, in large
part due to uncertainty and disagreement over what their place in the war effort
should be. As adjuncts to surface craft, subs were more active, but still were
not encouraged toward independent action. Offical policy at the time called for
caution: sub captains were admonished not to be aggressive or to take chances.
The lack of tangible success lowered crew morale and raised doubts about
submarine effectiveness in the war effort.
DEVELOPING SUBMARINERS: Command inertia was not the only problem, it became
clear that the special rigours of submarine service required a special captain
and crew. The special situation of submarine service called for a different
class of fighting man. Sten disciplinarians were not necessarily the best
commanders: an aggressive and flexible kind of leader was needed to handle the
myriad of situations a submarine faced. As for those of the crew, a more stoic,
"get the job done" mentality proved more valuable in the tense conditions of sub
warfare than cowboy bravado. An understanding of submarine psychology was a
large step forward in improving submarine success.
TORPEDO TROUBLES: The lack of an effective and reliable torpedo plagued American
forces throughout the war. Initially the poor showing of subs in the combat with
the Japanese was attributed to human error. Some naval officials, as well as the
Bureau of Ordnance, had fully supported the mark XIV torpedo and its Mark VI
exploder. The Mark VI incorporated a magnetic detonator in addition to the
conventional contact detonator in order to increate the torpedo's effectiveness
against large heavily armoured craft. Laboratory testing proved very successful,
but in actual combat situation, a chorus of complaints arose from sub commanders
from across the fleet. An impasse arose with the torpedoes builders and backers
on one side and the sub captains on the other. These captains claimed the
torpedoes were running much deeper than they should, missing the target. When
they did stay on course, the torpedoes often exploded prematurely or failed to
explode at all. The Bureau of Ordnance continued to blame the performance of the
sub crew for the problem, despite mounting evidence tha tsomething was indeed
wrong with their torpedo. Once thorough testing was done, a faulty firing pin
mechanism was discovered. When the torpedo had struck its target dead on, the
firing pin was crushed in such a way that it could not trigger the explosion.
Ironically, perfect sighting had usually resulted in a poor performance record
for the submarine crew. Once the problem was conceded, the sub fleet was held in
higher esteem by those in command. As performance levels rose, so did the morale
of the submarine crews. Even so, the performance and scarcity of the torpedo
hampered sub operations throughout the war.
THE BALANCE SHIFTS: By 1943, the balance of Pacific power was shifting to the
Americans favor. Broader combat experience and more effective subs and torpedoes
were gradually putting the U.S. on the offensive for the first time. The
Japanese remained a dangerous enemy - retaining an edge in experience and
torpedo technology that they would keep throughout the war. Still, the lack of
internal resources was taking its toll. Their earlier successful conquests had
strung the Japanese forces on islands across the pacific, making their convoys
of supplies even more important to Japanese success. The Americans recognized
this vulnerability and successfully exploited it to defeat Japan.
Fully half of Japan's 6,000,000 tons of shipping were required just to sustain
their civilian population. U.S. forces gradually closed in on Japan, choking off
the supply arteries essential to the Japanese war effort. American subs sank
nearly 3,000,000 tons of shipping, nearly half of what they had at the war's
beginning. By the close of 1944, U.S. boats dominated the Pacific. With Army Air
Corps bombers and carrier planes, U.S. subs could strike at will in nearly every
corner of the Japanese empire.
The Japanese continued to suffer from a shrinking force of capable fighting men
and moreale was crippled by continued bombing of the Japanese homeland,
something their warlords had promised would never come to pass. The Japanese
forces were still dangerous, but their grip on the Pacific was irrevocably
broken. The question in terms of time and lives yet lost remained, but American
victory was now a certainty.
The war in the Pacific was the crucible which transformed the American submarine
from a vague conception of uncertain worth into a full-fledged and eventually
invaluable component of the American armed services.
Japanese shipping generally travelled in small convoys of three to seven ships.
Occasionally, cargo ships and warships might travel alone. As the war progressed
and Japanese losses mounted, increasing numbers of escorts were assigned to
these convoys. Convoys may consist of cargo ships, troop ships, tankers, and
Tankers were the most important target class. The Japanese were critically
dependent on the flow of oil to keep the Main Battle Fleet in operation. Troop
ships were also important targerts. These ships transported troops to and from
their far-flung island conquests. You are more likely to find these valuable
ships among the shipping lanes which lead directly to Japan.
Cargo ships represented the majority of Japanese shipping. They conveyed
supplies and equipment to and from the Japanese homeland.
Escorts came in two classes; destroyers were often used for escort duty,
especially in important convoys. The Japanese also constructed a special class
of escort for anti-submarine defense: the "Kaibokan". Both destroyers and
Kaibokan were armed with guns to engage submarines on the surface, sonar to
detect submarines below the surface, and depth submarine on the surface could
outrun a Kaibokan, which had to top speed of less than 20 knots. Destroyers
could steam at close to 30 knots.
A twisting, speeding, shallow-draft escort was very difficult torpedo target,
although a single hit was generally sufficient to sink one.
Japanese convoy traffic tended to concentrate along the route between major
ports. Refer to convoy route map for details.
Japanese escorts were formidable opponents. Their optical and sonar equipment
were excellent quality and Japanese gunnery was outstanding. The primary
deficiencies were depth charges which tended to be set too shallow and the lack
of surface radar until late in the war. This encouraged the night-surface attack
and deep submergence as an evasion technique. The Japanese also had a tendency
to give up the hunt once contact was lost, although some experienced escorts
showed more persistence.
The goal of the escort was to sight an attacking submarine to destroy or drive
it deep before it approached torpedo firing range. As the escort swept back and
forth across the path of the convoy, lookouts constantl scanned the seas and
sonar operators searched under the water for the telltale silhouette, periscope
feather, or sonar echo which betrayed the sub's presence. If a sub was sighted,
all escorts charged the sub at maximum speed. An unwary sub might be caught near
the surface and destroyed. A quicker adversary could still be forced to dive
deep, removing it as a threat to the convoy. Once a sub had been driven under,
the escorts circled the last sighting, hoping to establish sonar contact and
conduct a depth charge attack.
CONVOY ACTION SCENARIOS /
Convoy Action scenarios are shorter scenarios which place you in specific
historical situations. They are useful for becomming acquainted with the
features on this simulation, practicing specific tactics, or when time is
PLUNGER (Lt. Commander D. C. White)
Jan. 18, 1942 Day/Submerged
Latitude 33-30 N, Longitude 135-00 E.
The USS Plunger, patrolling off the southern coast of Japan, sights an
escorted cargo ship steaming east at high speed. This scenario gives you
the opportunity to set up a torpedo firing solution against a moving ship.
Remember that even though the Torpedo Data Computer calculates the
correct lead gyro angle to hit the target, it is often a good idea tp fire a
spread of torpedoes in case your target changes course unexpectedly.
WAHOO (Lt. Commander "Mush" Morton)
jan. 26, 1943 Day/Surface
Latitude 2-37 N, Longitude 139-42 E.
Off the New Guinea coast, USS Wahoo Sights a small Japanese convoy.
This situation is a submariner`s dream: an unescorted convoy including a
troop ship and a large oil tanker. However, the convoy has a radioed for
help and a destroyer is on the way!
Your objective is to strike quickly and cause as much demage as possible.
Be sure to use your afk torpedoes if your bow tubes are exhausted.
HAMMERHEAD (Commander J.C. Martin)
October 1, 1944 Night/Radar
Latitude 6-30 N, Longitude 116-11 E.
The radar picks up a large escorted convoy as the USS Hammerhead
patrols the northern coast of Borneo. The tanker, one of Japan`s
dwindling handful remaining at this stage of the war, should be your
primary target. This scenario introduces night combat against an escorted
convoy. You should take care to avoid being spotted as long as possible;
use moderate speed, keep a minimum profile towards the escort, try to
time your attack so that the escort is on the other side of the convoy.
SEARAVEN (Commander H.Cassedy)
January 13, 1943 End arround.
Latitude 9-12 N, Longitude 130-38 E.
Somewhere between the philippine Islands and the Japanese naval base
at Truk Lagoon, Uss Searaven comes across a northbound convoy.You
are in a bad position: astern of the convoy in daylight. A careful "end-
around" manoeuvre is recommended.
Be sure to use the time scaling feature to speed up your run around the
TAUTOG (Lt. Commander Sieglaff)
March 16, 1944 Radar/visual Night
Latitude 42-25 N, Longitude 144-55 E.
Off the eastern coast of Japan, USS Tautog encounters a Japanese
convoy. Night Attacks depended very much on the prevailing visibility
conditions.During poor visibility, a low lying sub could safely close with
its target on the surface. If visibility was good, however. somewhat more
caution was required.
GRAYBACK (Lt.Commander J.A.Moore)
October 21, 1944 Submerged Radar
Latitude 26-48 N, Longitude 124-56 E.
A very difficult situation. Three radar-equipped escorts are guarding the
convoy! Your best hope is a drawn or dusk periscope attack.
PLUNGER: Radar, Steam Torpedoes.
WAHOO: Radar, Steam Torpedoes 400+ft.hull.
HAMMERHEAD: Radar, Steam Torpedoes 400+ft.hull.
SEARAVEN: Radar, Steam Torpedoes.
TAUTOG: Radar. Steam Torpedoes 400+ft hull.
GRAYBACK: Radar, Electric Torpedoes 400+ft hull.
The Patrol Scenarios are the true test of a submariner`s skill. Your
mission is to scour the japanese convoy lanes; to find, attack, and sink
the maximum tonnage of enemy shipping. You will encounter a wide
variety of situations, opportunities, and dangers. Note that each
submarine is differently equipped, your tactics should take into account
the strengths and weaknesses of your sub.
USS TANG - Midway Patrol
The USS TANG was the second leading submarine with 24 confirmed
sinkings between Feb. 17, 1944 and Oct. 25, 1944. the TANG was
equipped with surface radar, a deep diving pressure hull, electric
torpedoes and improoved detonators. TANG`s third war patrol took her
deep into the japanese controlled Yello Sea. in a span of only fourteen
days, she sank 10 enemy cargo ships; including four in one day! This
unsurpassed achievement earned her crew the Presidential Unit Citation.
USS BOWFIN - Brisbane Patrol
The BOWFIN, based in Australia, sank 16 Japanese ships under four
different skippers. The BOWFIN was equipped with surface radar, a deep
diving pressure hull, steam torpedoes with old detonators. BOWFIN`s
second patrol took her from Australia, through the Makassar Strait, to the
Philipines. After patrolling fruitlessly off the philipines, BOWFIN crossed
the South China Sea to the coastal waters of indo-China. There she
encountered two convoys and sank five ships in the course of three days
in spite of a number of torpedo problems.
USS GROWLER - Second Patrol
One of the first fleet-type submarines to enter the battle, the GROWLER
was equipped with Surface Radar only. The Growler was famed for the
heroism of her captain: H.W. Gilmore. After a collision with a Japanese
gunboat, Gilmore ordered an immediate dive althought he lay badly
wounded on the bridge, thereby giving up his life to safe his ship. The
GROWLER`s second patrol originated in Brisbane. Off the coast of
Formosa she sank over 15,00 tons of shipping; an excellent patrol at
this critical stage of the war.
Another early arrival in the Pacific: The USS SEAWOLF went on to become
one of the most successful subs of the war.Her second patrol included a
memorable battle against a Japanese naval force off Chrismas Island.
The SEAWOLF was equipeed with the radar and early model steam torpedoes.
The SPADEFISH entered the war late in 1944. She was equipped with
Surface radar, deep diving hull, and electric torpedoes with improved
detonators.At this point in the war most Japanese escorts were equipped
with radar. In spite of her late start, SPADEFISH sank 21 vessels for total
of 88,00 tons. On her second patrol, two weeks out of Pearl Harbor,
Spadefish happened upon a heavily escorted convoy in the east china
Sea. After persistent tracking, SPADEFISH sunk the heart of the convoy:
the 20,000 ton escort carrier jinya.
There are numerous books relating to World War ii submarine warfare,
many written by actual participants.Reading one or two of these should
give the player an appreciation of what it was really like. This simulation
has been designed to present you with the same types of situations and
to let you use the same tactics you will read about.
Make sure you understand the role of the Torpedo Data Computer - most
torpedo shots should be made with the periscope crossheirs directly on
your target. If you realy want TO LEAD the target, select the "ENTER
Angle-on-Bow" reality level and leave the gyro angle at zero. Now your
torpedoes will always track in the direction your scope is pointing. You
now must point and shoot the torpedoes like a gun, i.e. you must estimate
the amount of distance the target will travel from the time you fire the
torpedo until it arrives in the proximity of the ship. You then lead the
target by that estimated amount. (Under Normal modes the TDC will do
During WWII the Captain had not only to call of the range and bearing but
also estimate the Angle-on-the-Bow. Although in this simulation the TDC
calculates this angle, you are welcome to enter it using the "A" key and
the joystick. You should study the accompanying diagrams for the exact
explanation. However, a good way to estimate this angle is to use the
enemy captain method. Imagine yourself on the bridge of the enemy ship
looking forward. The angle left or right from the bow of the enemy ship
where the enemy captain would see the submarine in the Angle-on-the-
Bow. For exapmple, if the enemy captain would see your submarine 45
degrees off the left side of his ship, as the submarine captain you would
(assuming you choose the Angle-on-the-Bow Reality Level) press "A" and
move your joystickleft 45 degrees. As You can see this is an estimation
procedure. By using this procedure, you are trying to solve the equation
GYRO LEAD ANGLE - ArcSine (Target Speed x Sine ( Angle-on-
bow)/Torpedo Speed) in your head. That`s though, but good luck if you
want to try.
Make sure you understand the distinction between BEARING and
HEADING. BEARING is the direction in wich your scope/binoculars are
looking. HEADING is the direction your sub is facing. Note that it is
generally much faster and easier to aim your torpedoes and gun by
rotating the scope (changing your BEARING) rather than by steering the
sub (changing your HEADING).
In general, you should plan on making a submerged attack in daylight, and
a surface attack at night. During dawn and dusk you can try both.
Submarined were not designed for extended gun duels and did not
incorporate sophisticated range finding devices for their deck gun. Your
best bet is to try to achieve a position directly to the side of your target
which allowes you to use no range deflection (the target is neither
approaching nor receeding). If this is not possible, try a number of ranging
shots at different range deflections. Once you hit the target with a
ranging shot, commence rapid firing.
Most importantly, try to anticipate your opponent`s manoeuvres and
reactions. In gerneral, you will know more about his location, course
speed, etc. than he knows about you. Use this advantage to plan and
execute the most destructive and least dangerous attack you can devise.
World War II submarine combat is almost unique in the manner in which it
combines thorough planning, rapid action, luck , skill, quick thinking and an
endlessy varied environment. Our Initial research convinced us that this
was an area wich was ideally suited to the characteristic strengths of
computer simulations. Our Primary goal was to archieve a level of detail,
realism, and variety beyond that of other simulations produced without
The first majoy component designed and implented was the mapping
system. As you play the simulation you will realize that any area in the
entire Western Pacific can be displayed down to a resolution of 100
yards, with a corresponding displays. In addition, shallow waters and shoals
are included as well as complete convoy routing information to and from
the Japanese mainland. To squeeze all of this information into a 64k
computer was a major challange. However, we feel that the almost
infinite variety of situations available and the freedom to select your own
mission route and patrol areas amply justifies the effort.
Another major obstacle to a playable simulation was the time factor.
Actual submarine engagements could last many hours, occasionally for
days, as the captain manoeuvred for a advantageous firing position and
his opponents zigged and zagged to confuse him. However, once the
action began in earnest, torpedo runs were timed in minutes and seconds:
a well aimed depth charge attack could swallow up a submarine with one
devastating explosion. One solution might have been to adjust
sighting ranges, movement scales, turning rates, etc. to produce a
"bathtub" simulation with continuous torpedo firing, depth charging, and
frantic manoeuvering. However this would have negated many of the
tactics and skill required of the real submarine captains and defeated our
initial design goals. Instead we implemented a time scaling system which
allows the player to accelerate the progress of the simulation while
manoeuvering for position and still continues to accurately track all
This simulation actually maintains two distinct "points-of-view" as the
situation develops. The computer continuosly tracks all ships, torpedoes,
and your sub. This information is then filtered to provide the player with
the sub commander`s "point-of-view":information which is not available
to the sub commander is hidden (enemy ships which are out of range, the
enemy`s base course, etc.) The computer also constructs a "point-of-
view" for the Japanese escorts and cargo ship - only providing them
with the information which they actually know.
Finally, we included an almost endless variety of situations, options, and
play variations. On patrol missions you will encounter large and small
convoys: escorted and unescorted convoys: Shallow waters: day, dusk,
and night attacks: and a limitless variety of tactical problems. Each of the
reality levels adds a new consideration into your planning and decision
making. Equipment variations also require significant tactical adjustments.
The most satisfying aspect of designing and testing this product was the
opportunity to learn and use realistic submarine tactics. "Cookbook"
solutions will not handle the immense variation of tactical problems the
aggressive sub captain will encounter. Each situation must be analysed
based on an appreciation of the same factors which influenced real-life
We hope that you, too, will find yourself accepting this simulation as more
than just an artificially constructed "game". If you can feel a twinge of
apprehension as depth charges roll into the water above you, a glimmer off
satisfaction as your torpedoes find their target, or a spark of anticipation
as you embark on your next patrol then our effort have not been in vain.
We hope that the experience of playing this simulation will be as enjoyable
and rewarding as was the process of design and developmenst.
Good Luck and Happy Hunting!
Copyright 1985 by Microprose Software, INC. All rights reserved.
This manual and the computer game on the accompanying floppy disk, which are
described by this manual, are copyrighted and contain propietary information
belonging to Microprose Software, INC. No one may give or sell copies of this
manual or the accompanying disks or the listings of the programs on the disks to
any person or institution, except as provided for by the written agreement with
Microprose Softare, INC.
No one may copy, photcopy, reproducem translate this manual or reduce it to
machine readable form in whole or in part, without the prior written consent
of Microprose Software, INC.
Any person/persons reproducing any portion of this program, in any media, for
any reason, shall be guilty of Copyright Violation, and shall be subject to
civil liability at the discretion of the copyright holder.
Design and Development - Sid Meier
Commodore 64 - Sid Meier
Atari ST - Silas Warner
Graphics - Sid Meier, Michael Haire
Documentation - Sid Meier, Michael Haire, George Geary, Bill Stealey
Playtesting - Stephen Byrne, Jay Trotta, Gerry McMahon
Cover art - David Phillips
Special thanks to former submarine officers:
U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1953
Served on USS Requin, SSR 481
Gold Medalist, U.S. Rowing Team,1952 Olympic Games
Alan R. Thornton
U.S. Naval Academy, Class of 1967
Served on USS Robert E.Lee, SSBN 601
Microprose remains commited to bringing you high quality, real-life simulations
which provide excitement, challenge, and learning. We hope that you will enjoy
this product and other Microprose products in the future.
Manual typed by: Jedi, 6R6 and Yoko Tv Inc. of Nostalgia